HOME  |  AUSTRALIA 2003  |  ACROSS AMERICA  |  IMPRESSIONS OF CHINA  |  VIETNAM  |  AFRICA  |  AROUND THE WORLD 2009  |  SOUTH AMERICA 2009  |  LEGENDARY CULTURES 2011
  |  TURKEY AND GREECE  |  CIRCLE THE ARCTIC

Impressions of China

San Francisco | Beijing 1 | Beijing 2 | Beijing 3 | Beijing 4 | Xian 1 | Xian 2 | Guilin |  Chong-Qing
Yangtze River 1 | Yangtze River 2 | Yangtze River 3 | Shanghai 1 | Shanghai 2 | Shanghai 3 | Observations
(click any image to enlarge)

Chong Qing

Years ago there used to be a cartoon character that went through life under a rain cloud. That character may no longer exist, but the rain cloud does. It has been following us. We landed in rain, but thankfully it let up a while later. On the way into Chongqing, the guide explained to us that this city was always foggy. (There was fog/mist in addition to rain today too.) In fact, it was the fog in WWII that helped protect the city from being bombed worse than it was by the Japanese. Her statement was that the view of the skyline we were seeing (this first picture) was a normal one-when the weather was fabulous.

The day began at dawn in Guilin because we were so far from the airport. We landed in Chongqing at about 11 am to catch a boat that left the dock for the Yangtze River cruise at 9:30 pm. We were furnished a guide to baby-sit us and keep us amused in the interim. We were supposed to go to a museum but we vetoed that and asked to visit the local markets. The markets are a slice of the real life the people live. OK, true or false: Chongqing is the largest city in China.

The markets were close by the place we ate, so after lunch we walked through a flower market and an open air "supermarket." After watching how the food is handled and prepared, it is a challenge to eat at the restaurants. Oh well, they warn you about watching how sausage is made.

We visited an art gallery that specialized in local artists. We have been having a hard time finding a painting that we both liked for Solana Beach. A couple of paintings in this showplace caught our fancy and it turned out that they were by the same, well known artist who is a magician in shades of black and white and grey. Coincidentally, these are the "colors" we mostly saw in China. We ended up buying one.

Chongqing is so hilly that no one uses bicycles, a real difference from the parts of China we have seen so far where bicycles are used for both personal transportation and as delivery vehicles. To replace bicycles, men and women called bang bang or stick stick people carry around thick bamboo poles with rope at either end, in effect advertising that they are available for carrying all sorts of things. They also act as porters at the docks. The one in this picture is carrying our two suitcases on his shoulders, which together weigh at least 110 pounds. This practice of advertising that you are available for work is not limited to the porters. Like in California where Latinos gather at places to be picked up as day laborers, in Chongqing carpenters or painters will sit on certain city sidewalks with the tools of their craft in front of them. It's clear to everyone what they do, and it's clear they're for hire.

     

San Francisco | Beijing 1 | Beijing 2 | Beijing 3 | Beijing 4 | Xian 1 | Xian 2 | Guilin |  Chong-Qing
Yangtze River 1 | Yangtze River 2 | Yangtze River 3 | Shanghai 1 | Shanghai 2 | Shanghai 3
Observations


HOME  |  AUSTRALIA 2003  |  ACROSS AMERICA  |  IMPRESSIONS OF CHINA  |  VIETNAM  |  AFRICA  |  AROUND THE WORLD 2009  |  SOUTH AMERICA 2009  |  LEGENDARY CULTURES 2011
  |  TURKEY AND GREECE  |  CIRCLE THE ARCTIC